Don’t make me breathe your carcinogenic air

Justin Satzman

Smoking cigarettes in public places has basically been outlawed in the United States today and especially in California, which is one of the toughest states when it comes to smoking in public. Smokers can no longer smoke in restaurants, bars or any where else that is considered a public environment. But for some reason, smokers are still allowed to smoke on CSUN’s campus.

I am against city-wide bans on smoking. If smokers want to basically slowly kill themselves, by all means let them do it. They are adults and are mature enough to make their own decisions about what they want to put in their body. I, however, as a nonsmoker, do not want to breathe their second hand smoke and risk my health in the process. So I am in favor of banning smoking in public places and that includes the campus of Cal State Northridge.

The campus is a public environment and a majority of the time, smokers smoke right in front of doorways which I and many other nonsmokers have to use to get to class. It is not right for me or anyone else to be forced to breathe toxic air while trying to advance my education or right for a professor to be subjected to smoke while trying to get to work.

I think it is a disgrace that the campus has not become smoke free. Not only is there the breathing factor to worry about, there is also the litter factor. Let’s face it, the majority of smokers think the earth is their ashtray. Very few of them actually use the ashtrays that are available to them. They would rather just throw it on the ground and create an eyesore for everyone. In fact, the most littered item is a cigarette butt, not just at CSUN but everywhere. I don’t know if smoking just makes you lazy or if smokers simply do not care, but something needs to be changed.

I know that smokers are not supposed to smoke right next to doorways, but a majority of them do it anyway and there is no one that stops them. And given that the majority of smokers do not have the respect of their nonsmoking classmates to not smoke by the door, their smoking privilege needs to be taken away.

If smokers must have that nicotine fix before class, then do it in their car or in a parking lot, far away from the doors of school buildings. If smokers are caught smoking on campus, they should be fined, like any other violation. I do not see any other way to get the point across that smoking on the campus should not be allowed than money since we college students are all on a financial budget.

If this were done, obviously smoking on campus would go down and so would the eyesore of cigarette butts that decorate the landscape on campus would go down. I know smokers would cry that this is unfair but we gave all of you a chance to smoke on campus as long as you did it away from us and threw away your garbage. The majority of you did not keep your end of the bargain and because of this, you should lose all of your on campus smoking privileges.

CSUN needs to join the rest of the country and especially the rest of California and not allow smoking in another public place, a college campus.